I have seen the future – cloud computing – but not just yet
Posted by John Hallas on November 18, 2013
Today I had the opportunity to see Amazon Web Services being used in a real environment and I was very impressed with what I saw. The ability to drive any configuration you want from a menu system and pay for only what you use seems to be the way that computing must go.
It must be a boon for small software houses who cannot afford lots of kit and expensive DBA and Linux resource to configure the systems. You just logon and select the database version of choice, whether it will run on Windows or Linux (many variants seem to be available) and away you go – in a few minutes you have a full server deployed and ready to use.
Conversely, I am used to working at Blue chip companies who have made a very expensive commitment in infrastructure and have enterprise license agreements in place. It would be quite hard to justify additional spend when you have a lot of kit sitting around – even though typically it might take a few days for a new OS to be installed, database software installed and databases built and configured.
To someone new to cloud computing, the hosting of key business systems and more importantly the data on those servers must be seen as the major risk and deterrent to putting production systems out in the ether and I am sure a high percentage of externally hosted systems are non-production just for that reason.
AWS have a nice 10 minute video on setting up a web-hosted application which is well worth a view. Looking around on the net there are many more links and user cases available and of course Amazon are not the only suppliers. Oracle have a 2 minute segment which, whilst delivered by a salesman type with amazing title of VP – Customer Experience Strategy gives some of the benefits and does advocate a hybrid style of computing, some held locally and some held in the cloud.
I am sure I will return to this subject again, probably in more detail as I investigate further. In the meantime I can continue to configure and patch my Linux build on my laptop or I can try a free (for 1 year) micro-site on AWS. Seems a bit of a no-brainer to me.